Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Blooming May

Over the past few months there has been a real buzz of activity. Not only has the allotment been transformed to a lush green jungle, but structures have also been built to help us enjoy the haven that little bit more.


Through the gate and archway of the new children's area/Saxon village is a new seating arrangement impressively crafted by our builder Russell, together with the Targeted Youth Support Team and volunteers.

In just a few days a turf sofa was constructed from natural materials to provide a sturdy and comfortable viewing point of Moulsecoomb and beyond from the top of the allotment.

The piecing together of the turf over its solid earth base was like a giant 3D jigsaw puzzle and Aiden tried on a grass beard, much to everyone's amusement.

Once the grass was fitted and pinned down, the completed sculpture looked like a contemporary art piece worthy of the Tate Modern, but far more practical. Russell and his daughter were the first to test out the sofa, before it was well watered and left to take root.

The work of art is now camouflaged against the rest of a very green garden. We just await the arrival of herbs, and the thatching for the roundhouse to finally complete that area.


We also had Alex Mets to show us the potential for producing our own electricity through a bike-powered generator. It seemed ironic being positioned so close to a electricity building that you can hear it humming from the allotment as we would peddle away for a few sparks!

We were treated to an enthusiastic history lesson about the discovery of harnessed electricity and learnt how it all worked. The first question on from most was how long you would have to peddle power a kettle for a cup of tea...

We look forward to his return when he will install lights in the tree-house with the help of local school children.

Some of the woods in preparation for the Fringe Festival fundraiser event, rasining money to replace our stolen woodburner. This area will also give us more space for the woodcraft area that is gradually being developed.

A banquet table and bench were created for the event.

Woodland expert and environmental project worker Pat Beach and volunteer Amyas have also successfully tested out harnesses for the potential of being able to practice tree surgery skills, or just as an excuse to climb some trees.

The rest of the allotment is doing well and competing with the weeds are the beans, onions, garlic, lettuce, beetroot, and carrots. Our radishes are successfully crunchy, rhubarb crumbled, peas blooming, broad bean pods filling out and the first strawberries quickly plucked out before the slugs and snails have their nibble.

The next big event is the Open Days on the 12th of June for local schools and 13th June for everyone. On the 13th we will have some mouth watering delights provided by the restaurant Due South and the World Food Project cooks; tours of the woodland and allotment; story telling and environmental art.

There should be something for everybody, so pop the dates in your diary and come and visit us.